Network Rail joins RFC North Sea – Med

UK railway network operator Network Rail has joined the board of Rail Freight Corridor North Sea Med (RFC North Sea Med) to improve UK links to the European rail freight network. After a couple of years of preparations the new scheme went into effect on the 20th October.

Rail freight in the UK is worth £1.6bn annually and is set to reach £2bn in the next few years. In the network operator joining the board of RFC North Sea Med, so it will be easier to book freight shipments between the UK and Europe. Indeed, with the improving rail links to China, it may well be possible to book freight transport from locations such as Chonqing to the UK via Duisburg.

UK rail freight customers will be better able to understand and secure available capacity for goods to be transported from the UK through the Channel Tunnel and into Europe, and European operators will also be able to more simply arrange freight shipments into and around the UK as well. Businesses using the network will be better informed as to maintenance and rail improvement operations as well, giving them a good idea as to how long it may take for shipments to get to clients. The one stop shop approach will significantly improve the ability for UK shippers to get their goods to and from clients on the continent with much less problems than they face currently.

Using rail freight significantly reduces the carbon footprint per tonne mile. A tonne of rail freight can go 246 miles per gallon of fuel as against 88 miles by road. Access to the rail transport corridor; directly linking the UK with France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Holland and Switzerland via the Channel Tunnel will offer wider logistics opportunities to the company seeking to move freight across Europe, while significantly reducing its carbon footprint.